Gaylord News is a reporting project of the University of Oklahoma Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication

Gaylord News

Gaylord News is a reporting project of the University of Oklahoma Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication

Gaylord News

Gaylord News is a reporting project of the University of Oklahoma Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication

Gaylord News

Gov. Ron DeSantis’ education policies draw mixed reaction from parents ahead of Iowa caucuses

Florida+Governor+Ron+DeSantis
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis

GRIMES, IOWA – Schools are a political flashpoint in Oklahoma. Parents are at odds on what’s best for their children, and in Iowa—where the first of the nation caucuses are less than a week out—it’s no different.

Governor Ron Desantis—who garnered the Oklahoma governor’s endorsement early on in the campaign trail—said what he’s done in Florida schools should be the national model.

“That’s what we need for this whole country. What you’ve done in Iowa and what we’ve done in Florida,” DeSantis said at a meet-and-greet event in Grimes, Iowa.

With conservative policies like school choice and abolishing the federal Department of Education, DeSantis is resonating with many parents.

“Well, I think that parents know their kids better than the teachers do, and the teachers unions, and the DOE,” Iowa resident Joshua Shorba said.

“I think that the parents should have every right to have a say in what their kid is being taught.”

Shorba brought his daughter to DeSantis’s event in Grimes.

“Well, it’s somebody that I want her to look up to, to emulate,” Shorba said.

“I think he has an understanding, you know, and an ability to protect, and a calling to protect children.”

However, not all parents are convinced DeSantis is the right candidate for their children. Many of those parents took to the state capitol in Des Moines, Iowa to voice their concerns over another issue facing schools—an issue as timely as ever for Iowa.

On Jan. 8th parents and students protested gun violence in response to the school shooting that left an 11-year-old dead in Perry, Iowa on Jan. 4th.

Tessa Vestweber, who grew up in Perry, said Governor DeSantis’s education policies are distracting from what she feels is the greater threat facing schools.

“They’re trying to fix everything else and they’re ignoring another main issue,” Vestweber said. “It’s a bipartisan thing. It should not be an argument, and it should not be just thoughts and prayers because that’s not getting us anywhere.”

Now, as a mother herself she said this issue is imperative for her son’s future.

“I don’t think another kid needs to die as a result of this,” Vestweber said, in tears. It’s safe to say emotions run high when it comes to a parent and their child, and in this year’s presidential election, those emotions will undoubtedly be professed at the ballot box.

Gaylord News is a reporting project of the University of Oklahoma Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication.  For more stories by Gaylord College go to GaylordNews.net.

 

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Noah Mack is journalism major with a minor in political science. He is in his third-year at Gaylord College at the University of Oklahoma. Noah enjoys political reporting and eventually wants to build a career in documentary journalism. Back at OU, Noah is a producer and reporter for OU’s student-led newscast, OU Nightly. He traveled to Germany last summer with the RIAS program to learn about German media and politics. He also interned at News 9 in Oklahoma City, OK, where he shadowed reporters and producers. Noah loves writing and telling stories through video. He’s interested in domestic and international political coverage, feature stories, and long-form journalism.

Comments (0)

All Gaylord News Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *